David Burke to skipper Galway’s All-Ireland defence

David Burke will bid to play himself into the annals of Galway GAA after it was confirmed he will continue as captain of the hurlers as they try to retain the All-Ireland title.

David Burke to skipper Galway’s All-Ireland defence

Johnny Coen skippered the Tribesmen for their opening league game against Antrim at the weekend, but manager Micheal Donoghue has confirmed Burke will resume the captaincy when he returns from a knee injury in the coming weeks.

“Davy is still captain, but he’s probably a few weeks away. There are a few lads carrying knocks, but we’ve stressed to the squad that lads will be getting opportunities and hopefully lads will put up their hands,” said Donoghue.

Burke will hope to join two Galway legends this year by leading them to All-Ireland glory for the second year in a row.

Enda Colleran was the first to do it when he captained the Galway footballers in 1965 and ’66 when they completed a three-in-a-row, while Conor Hayes led the Tribesmen to the MacCarthy Cup in 1987 and ’87.

Prior to Hayes, only Christy Ring, who led Cork to the 1953 and ’54 All-Irelands, has managed to achieve the distinction in hurling, since the early years of the GAA.

First up for Donoghue is the search for new talent to bolster the defence of their league and All-Ireland titles, with more of their emerging talent set to feature when they travel to play Laois on Saturday.

Donoghue said he knows Galway “have a target on our backs” this year and they were pushed all the way by Antrim last weekend in Pearse Stadium, before they won by 1-19 to 1-16.

“The learning curve for us is that we know now that that is going to happen every week and we have to be ready. Over the course of the next few weeks, we’ll get some more of the established guys back, but there is an opportunity there for others.

“I think, because of starting early, Division 1A and 1B, with the weather and the pitches, everything is a leveller. We clearly understand that we were lucky to get out with the two points (from the Antrim game).

"But the main thing is that we continue to work during the week and we can look forward to next weekend,” said Donoghue.

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